As I ponder on the meaning of Life, the Universe, and Everything here at the end of January, I come to an old realization; there are so many distractions ready to take us away from what is most important and lasting in our lives. Wars and rumours of wars, peace in our time, impeachment, and elections all have their place, but they are distractions, some of which might be footnotes in the history book in 200 years, but probably not. Even more distracting is the news media presentation of it all, and the attempt to sensationalize everything. In an effort to sell their product, each news outlet has devolved to the point of terrorizing us themselves (as if the news itself isn't bad). Mind you, each of the things I mentioned is part of my intercessory prayer (and, hopefully, yours), but I have learned to limit how I get my news and how I process it, and in what quantities.
I am reminded of the interaction between Mary, Martha, and Jesus, when Jesus had come for supper. Jesus did not challenge Martha for doing the chores, but for being distracted as she was doing them, rather than being focused, as Mary was. We often read that story as sibling rivalry, with a layer of Active versus Contemplative thrown in. I would suggest that we often forget that there are three characters in the story. Jesus is not simply mediating between the two - nor is he taking sides, as we have so often read into the story. Jesus showed in his life that he was both active and contemplative in his approach to life, intentionally doing the work that was needed, but staying focused in his approach, avoiding the distractions.
As we move into another month, I invite all of us to consider our daily prayers and routines. That is often the invitation we hear as we begin Lent, so this invitation comes a bit early. Hopefully, as we consider these routines and disciplines early, we will be ready to implement them as we begin Lent on Ash Wednesday, 26 February.
What practices nurture you? Perhaps it is some extra time in scripture, in formal prayer, or in centering prayer. Perhaps it is in some of the contemplative practices of art, writing, movement, or walks in nature. These are all good. Do more! Perhaps there are routines or external stimuli that distract you and can be reduced in order to find more time for the practices that feed you.
Pax et Bonum,
Did You Know?
-Feb. 9th, 9:30am: Beginning to pray, in the undercroft.
-Feb. 9th: Tuna Sunday. Bring canned tuna to church in support of the food bank.
-Feb. 16th, 9:30am: Lectionary based Bible study, in the undercroft.
-Feb. 23rd, 12pm: Vestry meeting in Jane's Hall.
-Tuesdays at 5-6pm: choir practice in the sanctuary.
-The Centering Prayer group meets each Wednesday at 9:30-10:30am in Jane's Hall. Everyone is welcome to join this meditative practice. If you have questions about Centering Prayer, contact Martha Robbins, 296-7842.
-Thursdays 4-5:30pm: book study in Jane's Hall. Contact Martha Robbins, 296-7842 for more information.
-Every other Saturday 2-4pm: Mindfulness and Wisdom class in Jane's Hall.(Feb. 1, 15, 29)
The Annual Meeting
On the 26th of January, we held our Annual Meeting for 2020. We accomplished several things at that meeting and the brief Vestry Meeting which followed.
We elected David Hoos, Margaret Lewis, and Nancy Moore to three-year terms on the Vestry. Amanda Parker was elected to a two-year term, and Meg Verardi was elected to a one-year term. Additionally, we elected Steve Christensen, Carol Holt, and Noreen Lafferty as delegates to our Diocesan Convention, with Laurie Jo Leed, Janet Kendig, and Mary Krauthamel-Lane elected as the Alternates.
At the Vestry meeting following the Annual Meeting, we elected the slate of officers for the Vestry. Noreen Lafferty will continue as Senior Warden, with David Hoos as Junior Warden, Nancy Moore as Clerk of Vestry, and Carol Holt as Treasurer.
The Vestry continued discussion that was started during the Annual Meeting regarding combining the two worship services into one. The Vestry decided to combine the services into one service at 9.30 am. That will begin at Easter (April 12). We will continue looking at creative ways to have a Sunday School program, which is currently held between the services.
The Vestry also agreed to hold Vestry meetings on the Fourth Thursday of the month at 6.00 pm. All are invited to attend the Vestry meetings and join in discussions about what directions Trinity takes for the future.
Financial Report Summary
Our treasurer, Carol Holt, reported that 2019 Operating Income was $109,780 and Operating Expenses $116,446 for a deficit of $6,666. The projected budget for 2019 estimated a deficit of $16,479, so we ended the year much better than originally predicted.
The 2020 budget includes essentially the same Expenses at $130,000, but income is currently projected to be just under $80,000 for a proposed deficit of $50,000. We currently have reserves that can cover this potential deficit, but will need to make tough decisions through the year regarding our finances.
Mindfulness and Wisdom
Adult Spiritual Formation in Mindfulness and Wisdom, led by Seraphim Winslow, resumes on Saturday, Feb. 1 from 2:00 - 4:00 p.m. in Jane's Hall at Trinity Episcopal Church in Sutter Creek. These classes will take place everytwo weeks, Saturdays from 1 February to mid-May, 2020. Everyone and anyone of any faith (or no faith!), or from any religious background, is heartily invited to attend these free classes.
If you are curious about what it would be like to live your life with more Mindfulness, Attention, Goodwill, Intention, and Compassion - in short, with more M.A.G.I.C! - you will not want to miss this new series of lectures, discussions, and practical exercises for cultivating what some have called "Integral Christianity," but what is more accurately seen as a practical approach to realizing the Perennial Philosophy of Being, Consciousness, and Bliss in your everyday life!
-Free financial literacy classes sponsored by ATCCA are offered every 3rd Thursday from 2-4pm at Kennedy Meadows Apts., 701 NY Ranch Rd. Call 223-1485 ext. 223 to register.
-The LGBTQ Questioning and Ally youth group meets 1st Fridays 3:30-5pm in Jackson. Call or text 209-981-4689 for the location.
-Story Time at the Amador County Library is Thursdays at 10:30am. Contact the library for more details. 209-223-6400
-Upcountry Veterans free monthly lunch is the 2nd Wednesday of each month from 11:30am-1:30pm at Pioneer Veterans' Hall, 25100 Buckhorn Ridge Rd. Contact Lori (209-418-9695) for more details.
-Dementia/Alzheimer's Support Group meets the second Monday of each month (5:30-7pm) at Gold Quartz Inn in Sutter Creek- for information contact Susan at 257-1377. They also meet the third Wednesday of each month (2-3:30pm) at Amador Residential Care in Jackson- for information contact Sheri at 223-4444.
-Dad & me: for dads, uncles, grandpas, etc. and children 0-5 years old. This is a chance for a free, fun outing together (like visiting a fire station or garden center). "Dad & me" events are held the 4th Saturday every month. Call 257-1092 to reserve a spot in the next event. Space is limited.
-NAMI Connection is a free recovery support group for adults with mental illness regardless of diagnosis. They meet on Thursdays at 10:30am-12pm at Sierra Wind and at 1-2:30pm at the Senior Center in Jackson. Call 209-223-1485 x266 for more information.
All are invited to join the Trinity Singers! Choir practice happens each Tuesday at 5pm in the church. Bring your voices, your instruments and a heart for worship and praise! For more information please contact Mary Yount at 209-267-5461.
Food Bank Donations
Food gifts for January totaled 64 pounds.
The total for 2020 is 64 pounds of food collected in the food cart.
Thank you for your generous support of this ministry.
The following members of our church family are celebrating birthdays in February!
14th- Julie Mathis
17th- Jeri Miller
26th- Barbara Wells
27th- Shannan Yount
If you are celebrating a birthday in February, but you don't see your name listed here, please contact our Parish Administrative Asst.
Would You Like to Contribute to the Newsletter?
If you have an article of interest to the congregation that you would like included in the newsletter, please email it to the office, firstname.lastname@example.org by the 20th of the month. It will be included in the next month's newsletter.
Trinity Episcopal Church, 430 N Hwy 49, Sutter Creek, CA 95685